Release 2.3.0 includes significant investment in maintaining and improving Easy Connect security, particularly relating to PCI-DSS compliance. It also includes features and updates all customers can benefit from, including:
- 256-bit AES Encryption. Local and cloud backup files are now encrypted using a stronger algorithm, meeting more stringent industry and public-sector compliance requirements.
- Active Directory FSMO Roles. When joining an existing domain, FSMO roles are no longer transferred to the Easy Connect Active Directory by default.
- Faster Server Installation. Installation time is now up to 60 minutes shorter due to use of new pre-built, role-specific Windows Server images.
This release is applicable to all ProLiant Easy Connect servers.
Release 2.3.0 will be deployed to new ProLiant Easy Connect servers from January 24th 2018. The Support Team will contact IT service providers in order to schedule the date of server upgrades.
For new servers, please download the Release 2.3.0 ISO image from the Easy Connect Commissioning Console, which should then be used for USB-staging the server before installation.
After the release date, the Installation Console will not permit software versions older than 2.3.0 to be used, in order to assure compatibility with Cloud Management Platform updates.
Backup Files Use 256-bit AES Encryption
Backup data files are now more strongly encrypted to meet the latest standards of compliance.
Easy Connect servers perform a two-stage backup process for your data held in the File Share and Custom VMs.
The first stage creates a local backup on the server. This data is encrypted and compressed locally.
The second stage, which executes for servers that include the optional Cloud Backup service, then copies this data to Easy Connect cloud storage. The data remains encrypted in transit to the cloud and while stored in the cloud.
Previously, Easy Connect used 128-bit AES encryption. Increasingly, certain industry and public-sector compliance requirements are dictating that 256-bit AES encryption should be used, to further protect from the risk of ‘brute-force’ attacks on data.
For servers running Release 2.3.0 and later, 256-bit AES encryption will be automatically enabled.
Active Directory FSMO Roles
FSMO roles will no longer be transferred to the Easy Connect Active Directory when joining an existing domain.
When an Easy Connect server is installed it has the option of joining an existing domain.
Previously, when this domain was served by an existing Domain Controller, the Easy Connect Active Directory would transfer FSMO roles over to itself.
In situations where the Easy Connect server’s Active Directory is intended to replace the existing Domain Controller, this may be desirable. However, if the existing Domain Controller is remaining in place, you may prefer the FSMO roles to remain there.
The default behavior for Easy Connect is to now to leave FSMO in place when possible, and not transfer them to the first Easy Connect Active Directory instance to join the domain.
Note that, for compatibility reasons, joining a domain with a forest level older than 2008 R2 will require the FSMO roles to be transferred to the Easy Connect server. This will happen automatically during the installation process.
If you do wish to retire the existing Domain Controller, replacing it with Active Directory on an Easy Connect server, the Easy Connect Support Team will continue to provide advice on how to do so.
Faster Server Installation
Easy Connect servers that include Windows Server VMs for management tools (ZManage), Active Directory (ZDC) or Remote Desktops (ZRDS) will see install times cut by up to 60 minutes.
The Release 2.3.0 ISO image now includes Windows Server builds for each role. These replace the use of a single ‘generic’ Windows Server image which would then have needed to install and update role-specific components.
As a result of using these pre-built Windows Server images, the installation process has to complete fewer configuration, download and update tasks during the provisioning of the management tools, Active Directory and RDP broker virtual machines.
To accommodate the new Windows Server builds the Easy Connect ISO image is now approximately 10GB larger (44GB in total).
Overall, the installation time for an Easy Connect server will now be up to 60 minutes shorter.
Windows Server and Linux updates have been applied to relevant core server VMs.
Other software component updates in this release also include:
- Linux Kernel 4.1.46
- Untangle 12.1.2
- Xen 4.8.2
Previously Announced Deprecated Features
Release 2.2.0 included notification of the deprecation of ‘Web Filter Lite’, which will be replaced in a future product release, no sooner than January 2018. Please refer to the relevant release notes, available on the Support Portal.
Easy Connect DL180 Premium Support
A known issue in Release 2.3.0 means dual-CPU Easy Connect servers are currently not supported with this software version.
This affects only the ProLiant Easy Connect DL180 Premium server. All other servers in the range use a single CPU.
While this issue is being resolved, anyone requiring deployment of the ProLiant Easy
Connect DL180 Premium server should contact the Support Team for work-around advice.